Update: Public Libraries Honor Staff, Volunteers and Former Director Parker Hamilton at ‘Library After Dark’ Gala

UPDATE: Friends of the Library Montgomery County, a nonprofit that supports Montgomery County Public Libraries, honored library staff and volunteers during its fourth annual Library After Dark Gala, Saturday, April 14.

“It’s a fundraiser for our Friends of the Library Montgomery County which is the nonprofit organization that raises money to provide so many of the extras for us that allow us to deliver the quality services to the residents of Montgomery County that we can,” said Anita Vassallo, Acting Director of Montgomery County Public Libraries.

This year’s theme was titled Stories from the Stacks which celebrates the commonality between libraries and their users.

“Libraries are a place where anyone can come in. They can discover. They can dream, they can make a place for themselves in the world,” said Vassallo.

Library staff, volunteers, donors and community leaders were recognized during the gala for their commitment in making Montgomery County Public Libraries a nationally recognized system.

This year’s winners included Richard Freedman and Susan Cohen.

Richard Freedman of Aggregate Industries was awarded the Charles W Gilchrist Award for the company’s annual Quarry Earth Day at the Quince Orchard Libraries that offers educational and fun activities for families.

Susan Cohen received the B. Parker Hamilton Award, formally known as the Library Professional of Year Award, for her contributions toward the creation of the statewide Deaf Culture Digital Library.

Former Library Director Parker Hamilton was also honored with a portrait by Maud Taber-Thomas. Hamilton was the first African American to lead the library system.

The painting will be hung in the Rockville library branch. Parker says when people walk pass it—they will remember her as a passionate leader who wanted to deliver the best services to residents.

Hamilton hopes when library patrons walk past the portrait they will remember her as a passionate leader who wanted to deliver the best services to residents.

“I was the leader, I had the title but we all did it together and I hope that folks remember me as a collaborator, as a communicator, as the one who built bridges and who believed in diversity and inclusion,” said Hamilton.

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Mitti Hicks

About Mitti Hicks

Mitti Hicks is a multimedia journalist and community engagement specialist with Montgomery Community Media. She is passionate about telling stories that impact our community and may be reached at MHicks@mymcmedia.org and on Twitter @mittimegan.

Comments

One Response to “Update: Public Libraries Honor Staff, Volunteers and Former Director Parker Hamilton at ‘Library After Dark’ Gala”

  1. On April 18, 2018 at 4:32 pm responded with... #

    Thanks for this story, Mitti.

    As a member of Friends of the Library, I had hoped to go, but it was the same night as a reunion with my Washington Post colleagues from 1976-96.

    I hope to see you there next year!




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